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Sat Apr 20, 2013, 10:00 PM

Last British resident in Guantánamo 'may never be allowed home'

Source: The Observer

The last British resident being held in Guantánamo Bay may never be allowed to return to his family in London because of an alleged "secret deal" between US authorities, Saudi Arabia and the British security services.

Shaker Aamer, 46, has been in the Cuban detention centre for more than 11 years without charge or trial, and has been cleared for release since 2007.

This month, two Metropolitan police detectives interviewed Aamer, gathering an estimated 150 pages of testimony and allegations that MI5 and MI6 were complicit in his torture. These included claims that a British officer was present while US soldiers tortured him and that MI6 officers made allegations to the CIA they knew to be false, including that Aamer was a member of al-Qaida. His legal team alleges that the US, Saudi Arabia – where Aamer was born – and the UK security services are trying to ensure that he never goes home.

Were he to return, he would almost certainly become a key witness in Scotland Yard's investigation into allegations of British complicity in torture in the post 9/11 era.

Read more: http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/apr/20/british-resident-guantanamo

14 replies, 2078 views

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Response to alp227 (Original post)

Sat Apr 20, 2013, 10:22 PM

1. I literally feel rage engulfing me and

pulling me under when I read articles like this. It is absolutely despicable that the U.S., with the connivance of other countries, is doing this to somebody that they (we) seemingly admit is not guilty of any crime. Our government - and yes, I mean our President as well - is guilty of illegal and immoral acts and seems to be able to continue them with immunity. Where the fuck is our outrage???

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Response to alp227 (Original post)

Sat Apr 20, 2013, 10:44 PM

2. K&R

Disgusting.

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Response to alp227 (Original post)

Sun Apr 21, 2013, 12:23 AM

3. May he live to give testimony against the b*stards that tortured him.

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Response to alp227 (Original post)

Sun Apr 21, 2013, 12:49 AM

4. I have a ton of respect for President Obama's accomplishments

but Guantanimo is such a huge failing....it will taint his legacy...he needs to grow a pair and fix this...

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Response to GitRDun (Reply #4)

Sun Apr 21, 2013, 03:46 PM

10. Male junk references regardless, the Congress and several states have stopped it.

We do not have an imperial presidency, no matter what the RW says. Lawmakers denied funding to move them here for trial and states have refused to have them brought to be in facilities, even those that were built for the purpose. It's all part of the 'Obama is a Muslim and they are his terrorist army' spiel that's been spun since 2007.

Lawmaker defends stance against Thomson prison purchase

http://qctimes.com/news/local/lawmaker-defends-stance-against-thomson-prison-purchase/article_25c4eb8e-ddd5-11e1-bf6b-0019bb2963f4.html

ACTION ALERT - Stop Gitmo from coming to Illinois!


http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/illinoisgitmo/signatures/page/73

Senate nixes Obama's Guantanamo plan
Lawmakers refuse to OK funds requested to shutter facility by January


http://www.cbc.ca/news/world/story/2009/05/20/obama-guantanamo.html

More links from a quick google:


http://archive.truthout.org/060209o

http://www.correctionsone.com/police-technology/software/jail-management/articles/1955055-Mich-city-asks-for-Gitmo-transfers-to-fill-closing-prison/

Not as simple as 'having a pair.'

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Response to freshwest (Reply #10)

Sun Apr 21, 2013, 04:14 PM

12. He could have brought them to the US before the May, 2009 vote to cut funding.

I don't buy the it's Congress fault argument in this case...no way. I have a ton of respect for the President and what he has to go thru, but this was one instance where he should have been more aggressive. Their has been so much running around like our hair is on fire with regard to terrorists, he missed an opportunity to demonstrate that we can treat the criminals exactly like what they are...criminals. And for god sakes, let the cleared guys go.

I know it's tough now, but just as with his "evolving" on gay marriage, he does have the ability to use his bully pulpit to appeal to the American people to see what's going on there.

Probably should not have used the grow a pair reference, sorry...Gitmo gets me fired up.

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Response to GitRDun (Reply #12)

Sun Apr 21, 2013, 04:24 PM

13. Where does he get the money to do these things without Congress? None of this is without cost.

The GOP controls the media, most of the states and the House of Representatives. They can cut out anything Obama asks for by that method. And they are in the process of dismantling every safety program and building infrastructure by their refusal to allow increases in taxes. I've seen this upclose, no matter how good the idea, you cut the money and nothing can be done. Obama and governors can only shift funds, not create any of them. To do what we want to have done, these people have to be voted out of office. No amount of pilloring any president, governor or good representative gets the job done in any venue.

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Response to freshwest (Reply #13)

Sun Apr 21, 2013, 04:57 PM

14. We'll just have to agree to disagree on this one.

Obama's crew is smart, they could have found the funds before the May vote. I am not "pilloring" the President as you suggest...he's been a decent President, but there have been times where his calculating approach does cause missed opportunities....IMO, this is one of those lost opportunities.

You are right we need to get more progressive minded folks in office though...they do make it hard to do the right thing.

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Response to alp227 (Original post)

Sun Apr 21, 2013, 01:36 AM

5. Gitmo will remain a stain on our country

for generations.

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Response to alp227 (Original post)

Sun Apr 21, 2013, 07:37 AM

6. The law is the law, unless there are secret deals.... So laws are fluid and tough luck if you fall

into some category of knee jerk emotionally charged Alleged Crime...

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Response to alp227 (Original post)

Sun Apr 21, 2013, 09:15 AM

7. If the US and UK are conspiring against Shaker Aamer, why would the Metropolitan police go interview

him at Guantanamo regarding torture claims, and why would the US even permit that visit?

The article contains no evidence whatsoever of the "secret deal" it alleges; the basis of the claim seems to be this alone:

... Stafford Smith, director of the legal charity Reprieve, said: "It seems highly probable that the British security services are in bed with the Americans on trying to keep Shaker from coming back to the UK ...


Stafford Smith is, of course, entitled to hold whatever opinions he wants, but his unsupported "It seems highly probable that ..." doesn't carry much weight by itself

Shaker Aamer is a citizen of Saudi Arabia, so perhaps clearing him for release to Saudi Arabia was the most natural thing to do

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Response to struggle4progress (Reply #7)

Sun Apr 21, 2013, 03:25 PM

8. And some of these guys are not wanted in their countries of origin, either.

The US has had to find alternate places for some of them to live to keep them being abused in their country of origin, and some are in limbo. No telling what Saudi Arabia would do to anyone returned there, either. An informative article at link and worth a few minutes to read:

In shadow of China, Uighurs released from Guantanamo languish on Pacific island

By Eric Talmadge, The Associated Press March 17, 2013

http://www.ottawacitizen.com/news/shadow+China+Uighurs+released+from+Guantanamo+languish/8110898/story.html

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Response to freshwest (Reply #8)

Sun Apr 21, 2013, 03:31 PM

9. Curiously, the article in the OP fails to identify "Stafford Smith" as Aamer's lawyer:

... Clive Stafford Smith, his British lawyer ...
Guantánamo Bay: why can't Shaker Aamer return home to London?
Mark Townsend
The Observer, Saturday 20 April 2013 16.25 EDT
http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/apr/20/guantanamo-shaker-aamer-london

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Response to struggle4progress (Reply #9)

Sun Apr 21, 2013, 03:58 PM

11. The UK should take him back and let the chips fall where they may, IMO.

I wouldn't send a dog over to Saudi Arabia for safekeeping.

The whole thing looks like a colossal mistake. Whoever he was doing humanitarian aid for, abandoned him and should be asked why.

This is a terrible story and the truth won't hurt anyone. Bush is not there and neither is Blair to obstruct this. Those who did this (Blackwater?) should be held accountable.

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